Sunday, January 16, 2011

Collection Development 2011: The Awards

This was the first time I was able to attend the award ceremony - I couldn't make it in early enough for the one last year. So, I got up at 6:30, vainly tried to rouse my slugabed sister (who had stolen all the covers AGAIN - I'm going to think twice before we share the bed next time (-:) and off I went.

Alex awards - not my area. My teen area skews kind of young anyways. I will pass this list onto our director, who buys the adult fiction.

Coretta Scott King - not a favorite award of mine, as I've had dismal circulation results for almost everything I've bought with this particular sticker. Just to make life more interesting, I might mention that I'm on the controversial "awards should be the book and not the person" side of the CSK argument, which I've seen discussed on a couple blogs. Plus, they always seem to award to a small group of people over and over again.
  • Lockdown by Walter Dean Myers (purchased for library)
  • Ninth Ward by Jewell Parker Rhodes (nope. don't need another Hurricane Katrina book)
  • Yummy by G. Neri (will buy this one for the teen section. Not sure how it will circ. but I think it has possibilities)
  • Jimi sounds like a rainbow by Gary Golio (reviewed this earlier, but I'm not adding it to the library collection. And either nobody else was really interested in this book either, or just didn't read that post, b/c nobody entered the giveaway. What the heck, the book is still sitting on my shelf - leave a comment before Jan. 31st if you want it and I'll pick somebody randomly to receive it. It won an award! So you know it's good!)
  • One Crazy Summer by Rita Williams-Garcia (I am really, really mad this didn't win the Newbery. Not b/c I'm in love with it or anything, I haven't read it, but b/c everybody SAID it was going to win, so I bought it against my better judgement, sure enough it has only checked out, like, twice since I got it, and it didn't win! Argh!)
  • Dave the Potter by Laban Carrick Hill (I am NOT buying any more picture book biographies, not, not not. I don't care how beautifully they are illustrated, how wonderfully they are written, how obscure and fascinating the subject. They do not circulate and they do nothing to improve my neglected and dusty biography section)
  • Zora and me by Victoria Bond (There is no way I can sell that cover. Not buying it)
  • Seeds of change by Jen Cullerton Johnson. (this can go in the picture books and has a really cool illustration style, judging by the cover. this will circulate. this I will buy)
Pura Belpre awards - about which I kinda feel the same as the CSK, except I have an additional complaint and that is that I have yet to see one of these books embody the Latino cultural experience of the kids in my town, which involves a lot less culture and a lot more everyday experience with school, family, and friends than these titles generally do. However.
  • Ole Flamenco by George Ancona (not for my town. my Latino kids listen to rap and pop stars and I doubt if any of them know what flamenco is)
  • Firefly letters by Margarita Engle (undoubtedly beautifully written - please produce for me a child who would read this)
  • 90 miles to Havana (why are all the pura belpre awards Cuban this year? uh, no thanks)
  • Fiesta babies by Amy Cordova (reviewed this for Cybils - will buy and it will be loved)
  • Me, Frida by David Diaz (also reviewed for cybils. it's gorgeous. see above remarks about picture book biographies)
  • Dear Primo by Duncan Tonatiuh (I reviewed this for cybils, really didn't like the illustrations, but I think it's something kids can relate to, so added it to the library collection)
  • Dreamer by Pam Munoz Ryan (I wouldn't buy this if anybody else had written it, but Esperanza Rising is on a bunch of school lists here and I do get kids asking for Ryan, so they will probably check this out)
  • Grandma's Gift by Eric Velasquez (nah. text is too lengthy and I didn't care for the illustrations)
Sibert - I was very, very happy that Kakapo Rescue won! We love Scientists in the Field at our library - I'm even happier to hear Houghton Mifflin is putting together a website just for these gorgeous books. One of the things I like to use them for is for kids in 3rd, 4th, or 5th grade with very high reading levels. The subject matter is appropriate, the text is cut into manageable bites, and there's lots of variety for them to choose from. Ballet for Martha by Jan Greenberg was pretty, but it's like a picture book biography - I just can't get those books with subject matter for older readers and a younger format to go out. And while I have great respect for Russell Freedman, there are only so many American Revolution books I can fit on my shelves. I tried to read Lafayette and the American Revolution and got so bored I never finished the first chapter. So, yeah, sorry not getting that one unless I suddenly have kids asking for American Revolution books. Never happened before, but that doesn't mean it never will...

Odyssey - I don't usually pay much attention to this because of the very small number of audio books I buy each year - usually I buy stuff that's very, very popular, or specifically asked for. I will buy The True Meaning of Smekday because I want to have a book club on that and several kids prefer audio.

Stonewall awards - Is that new? I don't remember seeing it before? Or was I not paying attention? We own will grayson, will grayson and I plan to buy Love Drugged, mostly because Kelly of Stacked sold me on it, but I don't think we need the other titles. I was thinking of buying I'll get there it better be worth the trip which has been reprinted - anybody have thoughts on that one? or should I buy Almost Perfect instead? I think I'll do it that way.

Yalsa nonfiction award - the whole thing is too long to write. Can't see any of my teens being interested in Janis Joplin. I might want to read it though.

Geisel - I really like Bink & Gollie, but imo the vocabulary is too complex for an easy reader - or a beginning chapter book. And it's the wrong format for a BEG too. We put it in picture books, but I noticed older kids pulling it off the new shelf, so maybe we'll shift it over to easy reader. I dunno, where did you put it? Loved Ling & Ting, reviewed it a few months ago, and while my personal Elephant and Piggie favorite this year was Can I play too? I can see why the committee chose We are in a book.

Printz - Another award I will purchase selectively. Especially since my ya budget is so delicate this year.
  • Stolen by Lucy Christopher. (I have faith in Kelly of Stacked's love for this book, so we'll get this one.)
  • Please ignore Vera Dietz by A. S. King. (this is on a list of books I meant to read - it sounds interesting and I liked the reviews, so we'll get this one)
  • Revolver by Marcus Sedgwick (
  • Nothing by Janne Teller (um...nothing can convince me to buy Nothing)
  • Ship Breaker - I'll get it because it won. I think it's a little too lengthy for most of my dystopian fans, but you never know.
Newbery - ah, another collection of historical fiction about girls and their relationships with their mothers. Unless someone asks for it, I'm not going to buy Turtle in Paradise, Holm's other historical fiction novels don't check out much and my juvenile fiction budget is even touchier than my ya. I will buy Heart of a Samurai as that's something a bit different and some kids will like it. Dark Emperor is out, because I'm not buying poetry for, oh say another 5 years, except replacements for Shel Silverstein. As mentioned above, I already bought One Crazy Summer *mutter mutter* and I guess I have to buy Moon over Manifest, despite my dislike of quirky southern novels.

Caldecott - Bill Thomson was robbed! Robbed, I tell you!! NOTHING FOR CHALK???? I am very, very miffed. My only consolation is that 30, 40, and 50 years from now when some authors and titles who I shall not name are gathering dust because "we can't weed them they won an award",  librarians across the kidlitosphere will be receiving stumpers for "that book with the dinosaur and the butterflies who came to life and it was my favorite book when I was a kid and I want to read it to my kids" So There.
Anyways. I like Amos McGee ok, it does have a certain charm that grows on you. I meant to buy it, but hadn't gotten to it yet. We already have Interrupting Chicken, which I reviewed for Cybils. See comments above on Dave the Potter.

Batchelder - meh. don't really care. and the Weston Woods video...oh, sorry, the Andrew Carnegie Medal...nah. I'm not paying $60 for a 10 minute video segment. Seriously, not happening.

William C. Morris - I think I will buy The Freak Observer. I think the cover's kind of gross, but I bet teens will check it out.

Schneider - Pirate of Kindergarten looks cute, we'll get that. Already have After Ever After and I've been meaning to get Five Flavors of Dumb.

Did I miss anything? If I did, comment soon. I'm sending this order list next week (-:)


Megan said...

I like reading your comments and explanations for including/not including each book in your collection. I'm in my second year as school media specialist and it seems like the award winners have always been ordered just because they were award winners, but they so often just gather dust! I would be interested in Jimi Sounds Like a Rainbow because our school does a unit on the history of rock and roll and the teachers are always looking for good bios.

Jennifer said...

Yeah, it's a gorgeous book - just not right for us. I will put you on the list for the drawing!

Kelly J. said...

I was told by our 9th grade teacher - one I book talked love drugged to - that that book cannot stay on her classroom shelf. She has two copies and even her reluctant readers said it was incredible.

I skipped the reprint title and bought Almost Perfect.

And Stolen! That one I've talked to a good reception. Shipbreaker doesnt interest me in the least...and doesn't seem like it moves much!

Jennifer said...

Yeah, I feel kind of guilty if I don't buy the actual winners though - and my director will find out and I'll get in trouble if I skip them probably. Pout. I think you're right about Love Drugged - and I've noticed that EVERY SINGLE BOOK I've bought from Flux has been a huge hit. Something they're putting in the glue of the bindings perhaps?